Birzeit University commenced on May 20, 2016 the graduation ceremonies of the 41st cohort of students. The commencement exercises will be on three subsequent days.
The Class of 2016 from the Faculty of Law and Public Administration, Faculty of Pharmacy, Nursing and Health Professions and Graduate Studies, were surrounded by their family members faculty, staff, and administrators to celebrate their achievements. Celebrations are attended by the Minister of Education and Higher Education, Dr. Sabri Saidam, Chairman of the university’s Board of Trustees Dr. Hanna Nasir and university President Dr. Abdel Latif Abu Hijleh.
Abu Hijleh applauded the graduates for showing academic excellence and outstanding service to the university’s community and their country. He addressed the students: “Today is a day to celebrate all the hard work that got all of you to this moment. Your graduation marks the end of one era and the beginning of a brand new chapter.”
Abu Hijleh went on encouraging the students by saying: “You are inheriting a world that is adrift, uncertain of what to do next, and in need of your insight and wisdom.”
Abu Hijleh spoke about the university’s development as one of the most prominent universities in the Arab world. “Throughout Birzeit’s history, the university has sought to provide an education that cultivates the imagination, enlarges perspectives, and prepares students to the upcoming challenges. Birzeit University sees its studies programs as one of the oldest, diverse and most well-established ones.”
Saidam congratulated the students on behalf of the President of the State of Palestine Mahmoud Abbas. He then reaffirmed the ministry’s mission to prepare Palestinian youth to contribute to the development of their society, think critically and actively and always seek knowledge and creativity.
“It is my honor and privilege to have the opportunity to officiate at this important occasion, which is a milestone achievement in our students’ future”, Saidam assured. “Palestine desperately needs brains and pioneers to overcome the political, economical and social challenges that our country goes through every day. We are responsible for our tomorrow, which we have to bring about through our thoughts and actions that contribute to building the culture of peace.”
During the ceremony, Nasir conferred an honorary degree to Sameer Owaida, who is considered one of the most influential leaders and generous contributors to Birzeit University and Palestine. “Owaida is a great example of people who have done just what all of us hope to do”, Nasir said. “Today we are recognizing the man in the round, his whole career, his contribution to society as well as to the academy.”
Nasir praised Owaida’s strong sense of social conscience and compassion as he has great contributions to Palestine and particularly to Birzeit University where he donated classes, renovated labs and offered a number of scholarships to students.
Law student Omran Tamimi, and master’s student Noura Mirei’ delivered a speech in which they underscored the skills and knowledge that they gained from the university during their study years.
Graduates’ were handed their certificates after they professed their commitment to the graduates’ oath, which was read by Abu Hijleh.